11 February 2023

Fembruary: Order of the Azure Star

Fembruary has kicked off (well, 11 days ago) so here's my first entry: a squad of Sisters of Battle knock-offs!

I've liked the Citadel Sisters of Battle models for a while, but like almost all GW minis they're bloody expensive. So when I saw these ladies on Etsy I picked them up for $35, which is $25 cheaper than the official models.

I named them after female relatives and one special lady, so allow me to introduce, from left, Battle Sisters Louise and Joan; Sister Superior Alicia; and Battle Sisters Sandra and Sian. The models come in separate pieces and there's a ton of weapon options including hand flamers, heavy meltas and chainswords.

Instead of being the usual silver, black or grey prints, these were purple, which is a bit different. I kicked off by spraying them all with aluminium paint to save time, and which would come back to bite me on the arse later on. Once dry they were given a thin wash of Nuln Oil to shade them.

The aluminium was given a light drybrush with Silver before I hit the details. I painted all the blue bits with a basecoat of Heavy Blue, which is a really nice shade and covers well. That was highlighted with Flat Blue and Deep Sky Blue and then everything got a coat of matte varnish just to cut down on the shininess of the metallic paints. Alicia's sword was originally painted Silver but it didn't cover well, so I went over it with Leadblecher instead.

Their straps and holsters were basecoated with Chocolate Brown before having some layers of Mahogany Brown and Balor Brown for the highlights, and then a wash with Agrax Earthshade to tie the highlighting together. The grenades are just Khorne Red and Mephiston Red with some Nuln Oil to bring out the details.

Louise's melta gun was a bit boring until I remembered about the scorched metal effect. It's just layers of Druchii Voilet, Drakenhof Nightshade and Seraphim Sepia dabbed on the barrel of the gun, and it looks very effective.

All the other weapons were painted Black, highlighted with Neutral Grey and then had their covers painted in the same blues as the fleur-de-lis on their armour.

I went for something different on the bases, using Agrellan Earth to get a cracked look. After watching a GW tutorial on how to use it, I daubed it on and left it for a good hour or so to dry. I'm not that happy with the results; I mean, it looks OK but it isn't quite what I was going for. I can't work out if I used too little of the paint but after a coat of matte varnish and some tufts and stones, it's kind of growing on me.

The aluminium spray paint caused an issue when touching up errant bits of blue and brown. I don't have a metallic that's an exact match for it; Iron Warriors, Plate Metal, Gun Metal and Leadbelcher are all too dark and Silver is too light. I should have just sprayed a pool of aluminium into a plastic tub and brushed it on, but I ended up just using a mix of Leadbelcher and Silver and hoping for the best.

They look really good, and despite the problem caused by the spray paint they were pretty easy to get done. Well, they would have been if work hadn't kept getting in the way, meaning I did these over an eight-day period, painting them mainly very early in the mornings. I have five more Sisters to paint, and I'll start on them as soon as I've decided which colours to use.

There's more Fembruary entries to come as well as another Muppets' mission, so stay tuned!


  1. Excellent work on the SOB's Matt, the sculpts are really nice and well proportioned ( some of the GW one's would be skeletons to fit inside some of their armour) and the knightly looking helms are a great touch as well

    1. Cheers, Dave! It was the beakie-like helms that got my attention with these models, as well as the decent price and the sheer amount of extra weapons in the set. They came out looking really good!

  2. Oh those are very nice mate, the colours work really well on them too, I think the sculpts look nicer than the official GW ones (from what I remember), these look a lot leaner and meaner to me. 😁

    Those breastplates look rather uncomfortable to wear (and undignified to get into I bet!) though. 😂

    Cheers Roger.

  3. If it's any cpnsoloation, your home-made aluminium touchups aren;t visible to me and dont deter form these wonderul looking pieces.

  4. Interesting looking team. Not a big fan of the sculpts themselves but I like the scheme and the metals look really good considering the troubles you describe.
    They remind me of some Relic Knights minis by Ninja Division.

  5. Excellent paintjobs, Matt, and a cracking find on Etsy - You really do seem to find some awesome looking minis on that site. I can't see any touch-up work whatsoever, so whatever your mix looked like I suggest it worked well. Love the colour scheme too - much better than the predominantly black one the SoB tend to be depicted in.

  6. Great start for Fembruary! The silver is really nice and bright and looks good on the minis. I liked the scorched metal effect on that gun too. I'm surprised you didn't post a cosplay pic of the ladies dressed up next to their minis, haha!

  7. I am a fan of Sisters of Battle though I haven't actually painted any yet. I should probably rectify that one of these days... All this is to say, these look great and I think whoever made these did a great job ripping off GW :) They look pretty darn similar in the armor design. You did a great job painting them up and kudos for avoiding the stereotypical Sisters colors as well. They're one of those armies where everyone paints them in one or two color schemes for some reason.

  8. John@justneedsvarnishMonday, February 20, 2023

    Cripes, I'm a bit behind on your posts! These are really nice figures, Matt, and I much prefer them to GW figures!